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VPN Best Solution?

Good Afternoon Experts:

I am currently running SBS2003 with Exchange server and SQL.  We use both of them heavily.  we also have a pub drive where we store local files that need be

We have remote users who talk about the VPN speed being a little slow.  (Which I know they only get our upload speeds)

What I was kind of wondering, is two fold.  

1) Are there other solutions to have remote users connect to our network with faster speeds.
2) Are there policies I should create that will reduce bandwidth between remote users and our servers?  

If you have any questions please ask.  Thank you in advance for your help.

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laustandphound
Asked:
laustandphound
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1 Solution
 
MesthaCommented:
The bottleneck with VPN is always bandwidth. You are running LAN products over bandwidth not designed for it. Little that you can do without spending a lot of cash.

The main thing I have done with a few clients is to deploy a terminal server. That allows the user to connect to something local and the leg work is done inside. I have run TS over a mobile phone before (not pretty, but worked).

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
Mestha,

Thank you so much.

So how do major corporations run these LAN products over bandwidth?  

I don't think all of them use terminal servers, so what's their secret?  

Sorry, I'm still young in IT. :)  (But Aging double in real life because of IT) haha.
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MesthaCommented:
The bigger you are the more bandwidth you have. Get above 40 or 50 users connecting remotely I start looking away from xDSL for remote access. The cost goes up, but that is what happens when you want to move more data over the connection.

Terminal services or Citrix is used by a lot of companies for remote access. Microsoft do that as a remote access method for their staff (one of many).

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
I guess I'm still confused.  What is xDSL in comparison to a T1 pipe?  

When you say Citrix, do you mean something like Gotomypc?  Doesn't that require that a computer be in the building for them?  
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MesthaCommented:
xDSL usually has a higher DOWNLOAD speed, than upload. It is also much cheaper than a T1 or other fixed connection. A T1 would usually give you the same bandwidth speed up and down, and consequently costs a lot more.

Gotomypc is a consumer product made by Citrix. When I referred to Citrix I referred to their Enterprise level products which are built on Terminal Services.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
Ok.

We have a T1 line... which currently is offering us 1.5 full duplex.  (We are upgrading to 3.0 in 60 days)  

Does that sound like it will help with speed issues on the VPN?
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MesthaCommented:
When it comes to VPN you can never have too much bandwidth, it comes down to how you are managing it and what goes over it.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
So, we might set a limit as to what type of files or filesize can go over the VPN?
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MesthaCommented:
Setting hard limits on what can and cannot go over a VPN is almost impossible, because the traffic appears to be on the LAN. In many cases the users are self regulating, because they are inpatient and know that something large will take ages to transfer.

However if you ensure that things like remote users Outlook is in cached mode then you can limit the amount of data going over the VPN.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
So... Make sure remote users ARE in cached mode?  

what is the benefit to that?  Aren't their files still going over the VPN?
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MesthaCommented:
If Outlook is in cached mode then the bulk of email is stored locally. If it is not in cached mode then everything is live, which is very bandwidth intensive.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
So, in cached mode, after it's downloaded from the server it's local.  I thought so.

I still have users saying attachments take 2-3 minutes to open.. (1 meg)  So.. I'm just trying to figure that out.
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MesthaCommented:
If the email has been fully downloaded to their Outlook and it is in cached mode then a delay should not be occurring. The delay would be caused by something else.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
But if they're working and an E-mail arrives and they click it immediately, then it might take a minute?
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MesthaCommented:
The email should be already there. The message should be downloaded and then the new message ping. Cached mode is supposed to do that in the background. Of course the user will probably notice if a large attachment is being downloaded because of the bandwidth hit.

Simon.
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laustandphoundAuthor Commented:
Thank you so much for all of your information.
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